Saturday, October 3, 2009

Christmas Shopping For Beatles Fans Has Never Been Easier‏

by Jake Topp

On 9/9/9 three really cool new Beatles products were released; The Beatles in Stereo Box Set, The Beatles in Mono Box Set, and The Beatles Rock Band Video Game. These three new great gift possibilities has made Christmas (or whatever holiday you celebrate) shopping for a fan of the greatest band of all time easier than ever before.

These box sets are excellent gifts for any fan. In fact, I think they are such great gifts that many fans wouldn't even mind having a second copy (particularly of the mono box as it's likely to become a collectible) even if they already own one! The video game is a great gift for anyone who already has an XBox 360, PS3, or Wii gaming system. Of course if they don't already have such a system then you would have to buy them a gaming system too because the game is no use without the system to play it on!

The stereo box set includes every UK album the band released from 1962 through '70 in remastered stereo. What does remastered mean? Well it doesn't mean remixed so don't expect new mixes, instead it just means that the mixes you are probably already used to (on the old CDs) have been remastered so that they sound much better. That may not seem like a big deal but it is. It's a big deal precisely because the old CDs were actually mastered very poorly so there was a lot of room for improvement. Most fans have been blown away by how much better the new mixes sound.

They are "warmer" with more of the original analog tape sound because they were were mastered with much greater clarity directly from the original tapes. They also don't take part in the "loudness wars" which have ruined so many modern CDs. These remastered stereo CDs sound excellent in every way and it's amazing how many new details can be heard in the music because of the new clarity. The drums and the bass in particular sound far better!

The mono box set includes all of their official UK albums (including Magical Mystery Tour although it was originally released as an EP) except for Let It Be, Abbey Road, and Yellow Submarine in their original mono mixes. Those three were left off because they were never mixed in stereo.

These mono mixes are of huge interest to "purists" who want to hear their music as it was "intended to be heard" because The Beatles themselves worked very hard on getting the mono mixes just right while basically ignoring the stereo mixes (because stereo wasn't seen as very important at the time.)

Jake Topp recommends the music blog for all lovers of The Beatles music.

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